Better Than Chance by Lane Hayes
I love a good romance story but until I began writing I hadn’t really stopped to think about what type was my favorite. Some people love historical romance with Dukes and reformed rogues. Some love cowboys with a rough exterior and a warm heart. Others like a good office romance. The kind of modern day “we really shouldn’t be doing this” love story that appeals to those who enjoy a forbidden romance. Personally, I love them all As long as the characters have an unmistakable chemistry, I’m in!
Better Than Chance is an office romance. At least that is how it starts. Jay is convinced his project leader is straight. But he isn’t overly concerned by that detail because he figures the eye candy alone will be worth the long hours he will have to endure over the course of the few months he’ll be working under Peter. As time passes, he begins to think Peter has a problem with him and he’s convinced it’s the fact he’s gay that is the issue. Infatuation turns to hate until something happens to make Jay realize he doesn’t really know Peter at all. And he’s shocked and pleased to find Peter is equally attracted to him. Jay does his best to play by the rules when he and his boss agree to a “friends with benefits” arrangement, but eventually it becomes apparent he’s fallen for Peter.
The underlying struggle between Jay and Peter is communication. They are a case of opposites attract, which makes things interesting but a little complicated. Jay is an open, friendly, easy-going man while Peter is not. He is driven, serious and competitive. I love the interplay of the guys as they navigate unknown territory. Their journey has its share of bumps along the way until they come to a point where they can’t deny they may have something special if they take a chance.
Do I love an office romance? Absolutely! As a reader, I am very open to any type of twist an author may want to apply to the tried and true concepts of attraction. Straight guy falls for gay man, rich guy falls for poor… or the good ol’ opposites attract. But here’s the thing… I need to believe in their story. That’s what makes a romance novel exciting to me. The voyeur in me wants to be a part of the journey. Although I’m not a huge fan of excess angst, the truth is nothing good tends to come easily. Sometimes there must be a hard fought battle and other times, it’s a matter of faith. Or chance.
Thank you for having me today! I appreciate the warm welcome.
Blurb Better Than Chance by Lane Hayes:
Jay Reynolds has a crush on his project leader at work, but an office romance with Peter Morgan isn't likely to happen since Peter is straight. Worse, Jay soon fears Peter is homophobic, and his initial infatuation turns to loathing. But one fateful night, Jay is forced to acknowledge things aren't quite as they seem with Peter. Suddenly, his crush is back and unbelievably, Peter is interested too.
They begin a “friends with benefits” arrangement, which becomes difficult for Jay when he starts falling for his sexy boss. Peter’s past issues keep him from committing, and Jay has to decide if he can be satisfied with friendship if Peter isn’t ready to take a chance on anything more.
Excerpt from Better Than Chance by Lane Hayes:
“Close the door, Reynolds.” His tone was sharp and concise. No argument was expected or welcomed. I obeyed and waited for him to speak.
He didn’t say a word. He pointed to a chair and directed me to sit with a simple wave of his hand as he began a slow pace around the perimeter of the small round table. It was like being stalked by a tiger. There was an electric air of danger in this tiny space and I had set it in motion. I clung to my anger. I wasn’t wrong. Was I?
Peter suddenly stopped. He stood at the other end of the table with his arms crossed over his broad chest. As usual he was impeccably dressed in a gorgeous dark suit tailored to perfection. His dark wavy hair seemed a little longer. I absently wondered if he was growing it out. But his dark furrowed brow and intense stare told me to keep my ponderings to myself. He wasn’t in the mood to chat about hair. He looked pissed.
I blinked twice. I was almost afraid of him, but I knew that was irrational. I had a legitimate reason for my outburst. I just wished I had been a bit more professional about it.
“Fine. I will.” Professional, I cautioned myself. Don’t get personal. “You have given me rather baffling critiques, Mr. Morgan that I frankly find ridiculous and almost contrived in a way that suggests you want to point out the negative whether or not it has any bearing whatsoever to the project at hand.” Good, well said, I thought.
“What the fuck are you talking about?” He looked genuinely perplexed.
“You know what I’m talking about!” I exploded. “Correct paragraph two, sentence one.... that’s one example! What was today’s going to be? Change the use of my pronoun from direct to indirect? Or is it an adjective that you want me to reconsider? Or...”
I had become so worked up that I didn’t register that he’d moved until he was three short feet away from me. He wore the strangest expression. It was a cross between tempered fury and frustration. He held up his hand in that authoritative way of his, demanding that I stop. Stop everything. Don’t talk. Don’t move. I waited like a deer in headlights to see what he’d do.
A fresh wave of adrenaline rushed through my veins as I found myself literally shoved up against the conference room wall with Peter’s large hand at my throat. I swallowed hard and looked into his dark angry eyes, his face was two short inches away from mine. His breath was warm against my cheek. He pulled back and shook his head as though puzzled by his own actions before he tightened his hold at my neck and covered my mouth with his own.
I could barely breath. There was nowhere to hide, no retreat possible so I gave in. My mouth melted underneath his allowing the lip lock to become a kiss. A fiery passionate joining. Our tongues fought for dominance, licking and sucking. Peter’s hands trapped my head as he plunged even further into my mouth taking every last bit of control away from me. He ran his tongue over my lips before tracing a path along my jaw and biting my earlobes. I nudged him back with my nose and heard his low groan as he once again fused his mouth over mine.
I wrapped my arms around him and pulled his body close to mine. My hands kneaded his perfect ass through the fine fabric of his pants as I sent my hips forward to meet his. We gasped at the first feel of friction as our hardened cocks pressed together through our suits. It was electrifying and wickedly carnal. A mere glimpse into how intensely hot the real thing could be if we let ourselves go there. Peter stopped abruptly, straightening his arms on either side of my head. Our heavy breathing was the only sound in the room.
“I want you.” He growled, resting his forehead against mine.
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Lane Hayes is a designer by trade, but is spending more time these days doing what she loves best. Writing! An avid reader from an early age, Lane has always been drawn to romance novels. She truly believes there is nothing more inspiring than a well-told love story with beautifully written characters. Lane discovered the M/M genre a fews ago and was instantly hooked. Her first novel was a finalist in the 2013 Rainbow Awards. She loves travel, chocolate, and wine (in no particular order). Lane lives in Southern California with her amazing husband, three teenage kids, and Rex, the coolest yellow lab ever.